mom cradles her baby bump in front of a stone walk covered in red ivy during her maternity session

Rock Your Own Maternity Photos | Boston Maternity Photographer

As you’ve probably heard by now, non-essential businesses in Massachusetts are closed until at least May 4th. This presents an interesting challenge for photographers in the Boston area. April clients will need to be rescheduled for May, but our May calendars are already booked. For a client who has booked a family session, this may not be a huge deal as there’s no “deadline” by which they need their photos taken. For a newborn client, the story’s a little different if they wanted photos taken right away. Even so, lifestyle newborn images can easily be captured far beyond one or two weeks old and still yield adorable, squishy results. The real disappointment is for clients who desperately want maternity photos taken before their little ones arrive. Fear not…this Boston maternity photographer is here to give you some tips on how to take a few print-worthy photos yourself.


Get Creative (and safe!) with Location

There are a number of beautiful locations in the Boston area in the spring time. Unfortunately, many of these, such as the Esplanade and The Boston Public Garden, aren’t really an option right now. They may be closed or simply have too many people for safe social distancing. If you’re going out for daily walks though, I suggest looking for unlikely locations with blossoming trees. Often, I see the prettiest trees right on the side of the road. Have your “photographer” shoot close to you, or crop later. Of course, cozy photos in your home or in your yard work too, and will really depict this chapter in your life (Pregnancy During the Pandemic!). These particular photos were taken at a nearby location where we bring our dogs. We were the only people in sight at this time of day.

toddler girl places flower on her mom's baby bump during maternity photo session

Time of Day

Now that the sun is shining again, we should start seeing some beautiful golden hour light. Take advantage and schedule your pictures about an hour before sunset! This light is soft and flattering and you and your baby bump will just glow. These photos were taken at 6:45 pm.

soon to be big sister holds mom and dad's hands during family maternity session

Dress to Impress

You might need an excuse to get dressed up and feel human again during these unprecedented times, so use your DIY maternity photos as an excuse to do so. If you don’t already own a dress you love, you might want to try Wren and IvoryI also love maternity dresses from Pink Blush.

parents hold smiley toddler girl during family maternity session

Make the Most of the Camera You’ve Got

Only have an iphone? Use that portrait feature! It actually works surprisingly well in good light outdoors. Have a DSLR but don’t really know how to use it? Now is the time to learn! You can always just stick it on auto, but if you want to get the most out of it, YouTube is your best friend and I swear the basics aren’t all that overwhelming. A wider aperture will create a dreamy, soft background like the ones seen here. In these photos, I picked the camera settings and told my husband where to stand, but he still had to move the focus point himself and make sure he was taking in-focus shots. I taught him this a while ago but it wasn’t hard for him to learn.

Strike a Pose

My biggest piece of advice for posing is to make sure the “photographer” doesn’t shoot at an upward angle. This is never flattering, especially for a mom-to-be. As far as what to do with your hands, try one hand on top of bump and one hand on the bottom. Take some while looking down at bump, looking right at the camera, looking off into the distance, and one while “sniffing your shoulder.” Don’t ask, just trust me ;).  You can also try both hands on the bottom of your bump, and one on top and one on your hip for the famous “skinny arm” effect ;). You can find these posing examples by clicking right here. ORRR, if you have a toddler, prop them right on your belly and don’t even worry about posing!

I hope these tips are helpful for you during these unprecedented times! I can only imagine how disappointing it must be for those who were planning to have professional maternity photos taken and now can’t <3 .



Oh hey! I’m Melissa, a Boston family & newborn photographer, but I like to refer to myself as a toddler-whispering, child-taming, photographic ninja.